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When My Love Blooms: Episodes 9-10 Open Thread

As we learn more about the accident that wrecked our heroine’s youth, we get a better picture of her in the present day, and understand a little more what makes her tick — and what separated our pair so many years ago. Our lovers are becoming more and more closely knit, but the more they rely on each other, the more the outside world leans in to attack.

 
EPISODES 9-10 WEECAP

Our drama continues to hum along this week, first showing us the growing closeness between Jae-hyun and Ji-soo. It doesn’t take much for them to get right back in sync with each other, especially when Ji-soo finally cracks open the door of her heart and lets Jae-hyun see her pain. Both how she’s living now, and how she lived when they parted in the past.

Jae-hyun is in hook, line, and sinker. The life he was living when we met him wasn’t the happiest, and this week we see him all but ready to divorce Seo-kyung so he and Ji-soo can get back the life together that was taken from them in their youth.

But it takes a train trip and claustrophobic tunnel moment for Ji-soo to finally crack. We’ve been seeing it in little flickers, the things that upset her — rain, the scream of an ambulance, birthdays — and this week we get the full reveal. On her birthday may years ago, Ji-soo’s mother and sister were in the local department story when it collapsed. Hundreds of people died in this tragedy, and they were two of them.

I could throw a stone and hit a K-drama with a commercial building collapse, but I decided just today that they’re all the same accident. The timeline fits. So, in my mind, the building that collapsed in the 90s is responsible for the trauma in Just Between Lovers, Chocolate, and especially here, in When My Love Blooms. The widespread devastation of that accident is why it spawned so many stories. I’m not sure if this is really true, but it is to me.

Jae-hyun is the best at comforting Ji-soo during her breakdown because he knows exactly what she went through as a girl when the accident first occurred. She was visiting him during his military service when she saw the news on the TV, and knew that her mother and sister were there. I don’t know if it was more heartbreaking to see her realization of their passing in the phone booth, or to watch Jae-hyun seeing that agony from just outside. Once again, the drama brings us beautifully full circle, because he couldn’t console and be with her in the past, but he’s able to now.

Our couple is healing each other’s wounds and love is a’blossoming, as the title of this drama suggests, but there’s no end to the forces that try to keep them apart. And sometimes that means the ripple effect that their relationship starts to have on their children.

The awful mothers at the school gossip their heads off, which gets to the kids, which gets to Jae-hyun’s son, who then brutally attacks our little Young-min for the second time. Again, the school cruelly sides with the wealthy and powerful family, ignoring the truth — actually, not even looking for it. And as if this wasn’t bad enough, Young-min’s sweet-spirited character makes it even more painful to watch. He is so precious I want to cry when I see him onscreen on a good day, never mind when he’s being victimized, beaten, and then blamed as the aggressor.

Ji-soo and Jae-hyun are called in to put out another fire, and I really liked how the drama handled this moment. Rather than have these parents gloss over the gossip that started the whole thing, each parent talks to their son honestly and tells the full story. It’s a lot for a child to hear, but the honesty and truth goes a long way for both parent/child relationships.

At the end of our episodes this week we’re treated to a nice reveal which is basically the icing in the Jae-hyun cake at this point. We know he was the scapegoat for his father-in-law’s shady business dealings, and we know that what we’ve heard Jae-hyun has done doesn’t match up to the kind and principled young man we met. And it turns out, that’s all for a reason.

We learn that after Ji-soo and Jae-hyun parted ways in the grief of her family’s death, Jae-hyun met with his own tragedy. His father, previously active in the unions, was manipulated and scapegoated and eventually committed suicide. The clincher? The company that abused this man and used him for their purposes was none other than Hyung Sung, Jae-hyun’s father-in-law’s company.

And now it all makes sense. We suspected that Jae-hyun had some secret plot going on, but I have to admit I didn’t expect that it ran this deep — or this personal. I was fine with him just bringing down this cruel and corrupt company (and the man behind it), but now that Jae-hyun’s father was a victim of the same? Bring on the takedown — I’m ready!

 
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Hey @missvictrix Yes! The commercial building is based on a true story. Just found this on Wiki. The Sampoong Department Store collapse was a structural failure that occurred on June 29, 1995. The collapse is the largest peacetime disaster in South Korean history, killing 502 people and injuring 937. It was the deadliest modern building collapse until 9/11.

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On Wiki it says about 9 Korean shows made a reference to this incident. Besides Just Between Lovers, Chocolate, and When My Love Blooms, seems like Black also has a strong tie to this.

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I must have drama ESP! Thanks for doing the research ;) This makes a lot of sense. Isn't it interesting how the fact that they all reference the same real-life incident immediately takes the eye roll factor out of the repetition?

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Yoo Ji-Tae was the male lead in the movie Traces of love, who tries to move on several years after the death of his fiancée Seo Min-Joo, portrayed by actress - drumrolls! - Kim Ji-Soo during the collapse of the Sampoong department store. The movie tackles issues such as the process of grieving, PTSD and is a moving journey towards healing, hope and love. Hit me right in the gut a decade ago.
Also, you're welcome! :-D ;-)

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Totally! Plus it was such a traumatizing event for SK happened in the 90s so it makes sense if a drama is happening in the 90s they have to make a reference since it makes such a huge impact to everyone.

I was reading through the background of the incident, it didn't happen in a day, there were a whole series of the corporation modifying the building from the start to when the accident happened. The first construction company even refused and dropped out from the project because it was totally unsafe.

After this event, SK did a check for all buildings and they found 7/1 of all buildings have issues :(

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1/7*

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I don't know what other shows' intention of referring Sampoong Collapse into their story, but it is pretty clear When My Love Bloom referring it in terms of corporate greed: The department store collapse begins with the CEO want to get more profit by changing the building's usage into a department store, so he decided to cut away a number of support columns.

Then it make sense to Jae-hyun's intention. I was wondering in the first recap that his switching side from a fighter for the weak to become a defender for the rich is one of the plots I concerned the most. Now it turns out he has never switched side, but getting into enemy's line to fight this war, now added a personal level.

What's ahead will be even more darker, but now I am glad Ji-soo knows they are fighting the same war.

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And I guess, @peachietime, the screenwriter is not just write a story "base on true story", but put the true event into the story (Note the date of the event in the drama, comparing it to the true event). This is why the drama is so powerful (I basically was in shock when I was watching this event is unfolded in the drama).

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It is the same in Just Between Lovers - the corporate greed that resulted in putting less support columns.

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@turka @imperialtitus Because that's what actually happened. It was supposed to be a commercial office building, but the company changed it to a mall and removed the columns, the initial construction company dropped due to it being too unsafe, the corporate formed their own construction company to complete the project, and after that, there are even a LOT more things they did to modify the building. When the crack happened in the morning, the corporate already knew about it, they could have evacuate everyone, but they decided not to, because that day was a record high traffic volume, they didn't want to lose the potential revenue, so they didn't evacuate in the morning of when the crack first showed.

It's sickening he only got sentenced 10 years and later shorten to 7 years.

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I knew about this incident for the frequent reference in kdrama but never knew the detail. So heartbreaking for something that can easily be avoided. Human greed at its best. I'm shock to hear of the penalty.

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Thanks for this.
I was going to look for it, because the minute I saw it on the episode, JBL came to mind.

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It's worth looking more into the wiki because there are even more behind this :(

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My most favourite scene in these two episodes is actually in the Episode 10 when the parents talked to their sons respectively. From what I've seen, even Jun-Seo started to understand his father even if he said, "Appa has Mom....."

When I started this show, I have so many questions lingered in my head, like: Why they broke up if the loves each other so much (my first guess was Ji-Soo's father tried to separate them with any cost. That's true, but not truly right why Ji-soo left); and why Jae-hyun had to endure loveless marriage with Seo-kyung if he doesn't love her... Now we're given the answer why).

I love how the show reveal what's happening one by one, slowy...

PS: Dong-Jin is my favourite sidekick, in the past and in the present.

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Dong Jin is just the perfect sidekick!! Totally agree.

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My most favourite one when he dragged Jae-hyun to Jisoo's blind date and shouted "Sister-in-law!"

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I felt episode 9 was a bit of a filler. I mean, I didn't feel the story was advancing much (maybe because we didn't have much of our young leads ¿?), but episode 10 had so many revelations...

I can understand why JiSoo left, but don't get it totally. I keep thinking that if they had been together, with lots of talking and probably therapy (she clearly needed it) they could have been together, yet... we wouldn't have this drama, so...

I want to talk about Young Woo. I love the man he is now, but I don't think I liked the young guy he was and his selfish reasons: he was the one to turn JaeHyun to the police, he knew were JiSoo was and never told him, knowing how much in pain he was. And he wasn't doing it because he wanted to respect JiSoo's decision, but because he has a crush a on her, and it was all out of jealousy. That scene, in the bar, where you could feel how desperate JaeHyun was and all his friends trying to support him... and YoungWoo just wouldn't say a word... It hurt.

I'm also worried about SeoKyeong. I mean, I have this feeling she's not totally bad. She's fierce about his son, but when she noticed some hesitation in JoonSeo she asked if there was something more he was't telling. She loves her son, but she's not blind. Also I'm a bit worried about the reasons that made JaeHyun marry her. I mean, as for the last scene in episode 10 it's clear he's in that family for revenge... but he's married a woman who clearly admires him, and they've had a child together... if the only reason they are together is out of revenge, I don't like JaeHyun a little bit...

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I might've missed it but can anyone explain how ji soo's dad's carer knew to contact jae hyun when the dad went missing?

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Jaehyun donated piano, that's why they know his number

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I do like 'youth story ' better then present .Much more realistic and both of them stronger ! Although I found the actor who play Ji soo sooo beautiful I somehow do not like her character much at present story! I felt so sorry for her son . He doesn't have a proper parents both sides ! :) How come Jae-hyun’s father-in-law did not know who is he!!! He married his only daughter !

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Yes, it feels quite out of the greedy corporate owner not to do a complete check on the background of this future son in law.

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This show was not really on my radar. I was only browsing and checking things out, but the first 15min of episode 1 is so strong i end up bingeing them all. I just love how they weave the present and past storylines. This is a strong example of editing done well.

Things slow down a bit now compared to the early episodes. I probably shouldve give a bit more space in between episodes ratger than gulp them all because the traumas just keep piling and it does become too much for me.

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the show’s vibe is just perfect for my weekend during pandemic and in a quarantine: melancholy, warm and (a bit) swoony..

I too have an issue with the possibility of jae hyun plan the revenge by marrying seokyung and having a child, doesn’t sit well with me,,however, i’m giving this drama a slack, since well, it’s a drama, and i tried to understand it as Jae Hyun would not treat his child as a ‘tool’, and he separate his revenge while tending his child as a father, the way he talked him to his past with Ji Soo gave me that narrative that Jae Hyun will and always love his son, eventhough if his revenge plan fruitful one way or another I would suspect that his relationship with his son could be damaged.

and again, want to mention how lovely the OTP in present and in the past, and really wishing for their happiness.

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According to the director of this drama, Joonseo is really Jaehyun's biological son and Seo-Kyung truly loved Jae Hyun at the first time and would like to have happy family with him. But I'm thinking that maybe JH has not got revenge for his father-in-law at the beginning.

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I like the show despite all the hilarious soap opera elements in it at times, but with the reveal that Jae-hyun has planned for a long time to avenge his father, I fear that the drama will move away from "two scarred people finding each other again as they solve their troubles" to "This man having a court battle while the woman is doing something else elsewhere". Because darn it, I have watched that happen too often for me not to be fearful, especially when it seems Ji-so's ex-husband has grown interested in Jae-hyun, if we are to believe him. Although Ji-so's troubles are mostly in the past, Jae-hyun's are very much in the present, so it would make sense if she fades away.

I am putting it out there just as a possibility, but I wonder if Jae-hyun's son isn't really his? It will not excuse splitting up the family on purpose like he seems to be doing, but it might make it morally easier for him to leave that family? I don't know, I could imagine the wife having gotten pregnant, asking him for help and him saying he would be willing to pretend to be the father, and they married.

Who knows, I just hope that they will manage to find a solution that do right by the kids.

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Rewatching the end of Ep.10, and I am having a very terrifying thought raising in my head.

What if Jae-hyun's story doesn't end there?

It is pretty strange when Jang San's crony informs him of the investigation about Ji-soo's father he instead utters out Jae-hyun's father's suicide. My point is: what if the scheme framing In-ho (Jae-hyun's father) as company's spy is fixed by none other by Hyung-gyu, Ji-soo's father?

I don't know if Ji-soo can take that if it is true.

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Thanks for the weecap.

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To follow up with your comment on the children, I agree that Young-min is showing a maturity level of an adult or even better. I would like to remark that the scenes where the children are explained of their first love separately, is another great plot device to highlight the hurdles that our lovers have to face. In the case of Jae-hyun'son, we hear no answer to his question to his father, "but you have mother as your wife..." as the scene is ended after we see a brief close-up of Jae-hyun. Same for Ji-soo's son, we only see a brief close-up of her face before the scene ends with his question, "will you keep seeing him even if I tell you not to..." The truth comes out of children's mouths as the saying goes...And I sensed that the director wanted to highlight that aspect by ending the scenes with no answers to those questions.

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I have not yet seen this. I love both the older leads and like the young ML too, I have not seen the younger FL but she looked promising in the clips. The only reason I have not watched it yet as I am not in the mood for a tearjerker o heart breaking story with a lot of hardships. I might watch it sometime in future but I could not stop imagining a serious story with the young ML with Lee bo young in a romantic pairing. That is one of the new actors who can pull off a difficult role like that!

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